Sword Dress


I took a detour from the 18th century for the past week or so to make myself a more modern dress. A friend of mine has a Spoonflower account and enjoys designing and uploading fabric prints in her spare time. One of her designs is this collection of 18th and 19th century swords, available in various sizes. Spoonflower recently had a sale on their cotton sateen, which is one of my favorite fabrics to work with, so I asked my friend to adjust the spacing on the print a bit to work better for the design I had in mind, and finally ordered the fabric after having the idea in my head for months.

Because the background of the print is all black, the printed fabric (Spoonflower prints their fabric, they don’t dye it) ended up feeling a bit like it was coated. However, the coated feeling works for the drape of fabric that I needed and the print did not run at ALL when I pre-washed it, so I’m not too bothered by it, though I know some people might be, which is why I mention it.

I used the pattern that I drafted for my map dress (that you can see buried in this post), but I second guessed myself on the seam allowances for some reason, and at first the fit of the bodice came out completely wonky and everything I did to try to adjust it just seemed to make it worse. Luckily I hadn’t trimmed anything down with scissors yet, so I just took out the seams where I had tried to “fix” things, went back to my original cuts and seam allowances, and magically, the fit was just fine. Little slivers of my gray lining fabric are visible here and there, but nothing too noticeable. I finished it off with an invisible zipper in the side seam.






Bodice Front



Bodice Back

I can’t wait to wear it! Especially with the new season of Game of Thrones starting soon. Now it’s back to my various 18th century projects…

Current Project: 1770s Men’s Set

I’ve been slow getting going on new projects this year. The first thing that I’m trying to make this year is an 18th Century menswear set. I’m using the J.P. Ryan Frock Coat pattern and the Mill Farm Breeches and Waistcoat pattern. I picked up a dark green wool worsted and a navy linsey woolsey from Burnley & Trowbridge, plus some linen to line both the waistcoat and frock coat.

So far I’ve gotten the bulk of the waistcoat done, except for the buttons. I also had to dramatically redraft the frock coat pattern to alter it down to my size, which I will try to remember to detail in a later post.



I was nervous about doing the pockets, but I actually had a lot of fun with them, and the instructions are very easy to follow.


So it’s taken me a while to get going, and I’m still nervous that even after fitting mockups, the fit of the finished garments are going to be off, but I’m going to keep plugging away at this.